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Navigating IT Outsourcing

Navigating IT Outsourcing: Staff Augmentation Vs. Managed Services

In the ever-evolving landscape of IT projects, two distinct approaches stand out: Staff Augmentation Vs. Managed Services. These models offer unique solutions for talent management and IT project delivery. While Staff Augmentation grants you control and flexibility, Managed Services provides comprehensive management and expertise. 

Do you need clarification on the multitude of business models available today? You’re not alone. Let us unravel the mystery for you. This guide aims to demystify these two IT outsourcing strategies, learn how these models empower your organization, and boost IT efficiency in Staff Augmentation Vs. Managed Services.

What is Staff Augmentation?

What sets Staff Augmentation Vs. Managed Services apart? Let’s journey to uncover the fundamental distinctions between these two approaches. We’ll begin by delving into Staff Augmentation, where hiring practices take on a unique twist.

Staff Augmentation integrates temporary talent into your internal team with a twist. Unlike traditional hiring, this model introduces a dynamic where you bring in remote employees or an entire section for specific purposes and a defined period. These individuals aren’t your long-term staff, but they seamlessly blend into your internal team, ready to contribute their expertise.

In Staff Augmentation, organizations identify their specific skill and resource needs and hire external talent to fill those gaps. These external resources become integral to the internal team, working on projects alongside permanent employees. The arrangement is temporary and flexible, offering a unique blend of expertise without the long-term commitment.

Pros of Staff Augmentation

Reducing Hiring Time

Staff Augmentation significantly reduces hiring time due to the abundance of talent, especially in regions like Ukraine. More than 55 percent of software developers are open to new opportunities, creating a competitive environment that benefits clients. This availability ensures that the right developer can be found quickly and for any required duration.

Hiring Flexibility

Compared to Managed Services, Staff Augmentation provides a system where you can comfortably “connect or disconnect” specialists as needed. This flexibility eliminates concerns about additional payments and taxes, simplifying the hiring process. It allows you to decide on a specialist when required, offering maximum ease and control.

Economical Benefit

Economically speaking, Staff Augmentation offers considerable advantages. Forbes recognizes it as an advantageous strategy for businesses in 2022. The economic attractiveness of talent, particularly from regions like Ukraine, is tied to the local standard of living, making it a cost-effective choice. Ukrainian companies are leading Staff Augmentation and Managed Services suppliers, surpassing the United States and Canada.

Focused Control

With Staff Augmentation, your internal project managers maintain complete control, overseeing every aspect of the team’s work. This hands-on involvement ensures a clear understanding of priority tasks and the ability to adapt quickly. This level of control and direct involvement results in a smoother workflow.

Cons of Staff Augmentation

Monitoring is Critical

Staff Augmentation places a significant responsibility on your shoulders because it needs a documented service level agreement beyond working hours and duties. As a result, you must closely monitor the process to ensure employees complete tasks aligned with your project needs.

Final Result is Up to You

The main contrast between Managed Services and Staff Augmentation lies in the final result. In Staff Augmentation, the client retains full responsibility for the project’s outcome. You must be prepared to address current issues and assign duties for technical challenges, which may initially seem daunting.

As a flexible and effective option for creating a permanent in-house team, staff augmentation might be compared to employing personnel on a contract basis. It provides temporary access to skilled workers, which makes it perfect for short-term initiatives that might not require long-term staff. 

What Are Managed Services?

Managed Services (MS) is an approach that allows companies to transfer control over critical business management systems to external service providers. Unlike staff augmentation, which primarily involves temporarily adding remote talent to internal teams, Managed Services entail a more comprehensive delegation of responsibilities. Under Managed Services, the client company entrusts its resources’ management, monitoring, and control to an external service provider.

Managed service providers take on the role of overseeing and managing specific aspects of a company’s operations. This includes IT infrastructure management, cybersecurity, backup and recovery, platform migration, and more responsibilities. A key feature of Managed Services is the adherence to quality parameters and specifications defined by a Service Level Agreement (SLA). Additionally, MSPs often assign a dedicated project manager to ensure the seamless execution of tasks and the fulfillment of agreed-upon service levels.

The choice between Staff Augmentation Vs. Managed Services depends on the specific needs and preferences of each company.

Pros of Managed Services

Saving Time

Managed Services can significantly save the client’s time by streamlining productive time management. By outsourcing critical functions to a managed services company, businesses no longer need to concern themselves with intermediate deliverables or project deadlines. This allows for allocating time and resources to other strategic areas, like marketing and growth.

Stable Control

Managed Services liberate companies from the constant need for oversight and monitoring. Organizations can focus on finding new business opportunities by outsourcing responsibilities to a reliable service provider, improving marketing strategies, and attracting potential investors. It offers a sense of freedom from day-to-day operational duties.

Growth Opportunity

For companies seeking to embrace modern trends and technologies, Managed Services provide an efficient way to tap into the expertise of experienced professionals. This model saves businesses time and effort by working with a team of specialists, helping them keep up with evolving industry standards.

Cons of Managed Services

Vendor Reliability

One of the significant challenges in Managed Services is ensuring the reliability of the chosen service provider. While staff augmentation allows for stable control by internal management, Managed Services shift responsibility to an external vendor. Trusting the selected vendor is critical, as it can be challenging to assess intermediate results directly.

Compromised Autonomy

Managed Services often require giving the MSP significant control and autonomy in decision-making processes. This is necessary for them to manage the outsourced functions efficiently. Still, it can limit the client’s ability to interfere in day-to-day decisions, potentially affecting the desired level of autonomy.

Higher Costs Compared to Staff Augmentation

In comparison to staff augmentation, Managed Services typically incur higher costs. This is because Managed Services offers a more comprehensive solution, bringing in a team of experts and managerial staff to manage various functions. The added cost is justified by the extensive support and security it provides.

Both Staff Augmentation Vs. Managed Services play vital roles in shaping modern IT landscapes. Your choice will depend on your project’s complexity and your organization’s objectives. 

Critical Differences Between Staff Augmentation Vs. Managed Services

As you weigh the options of Staff Augmentation Vs. Managed Services for your organization, a concise comparison can be immensely valuable. Below, we present a table summarizing the essential differences between these two models, helping you navigate the complexities of this decision.

AspectStaff AugmentationManaged Services
ActivityAugmenting internal teamsComprehensive outsourcing
Offered byStaffing agencies and freelancersManaged service providers
Commercial StructureProject-based, hourly, or monthlyMonthly or contractual fees
CoverageLimited to specific tasks or rolesEncompasses entire functions or processes
ContributionTemporary addition of skillsEnd-to-end responsibility for processes
Expertise AvailabilityAccess to specific skills as neededAccess to a range of expertise
Long-term FocusSuited for short-term projectsIdeal for long-term initiatives
Dependency on ProviderLow dependence, easy transitionHigh dependency, challenging to change providers
Decision-Making AuthorityThe client retains decision-making authorityDecision-making often delegated
Cost vs. ExpertiseCost-effective but may lack specialized expertiseHigher price but provides broader expertise

Each approach, Staff Augmentation Vs. Managed Services offers a distinct set of benefits and considerations.


As we conclude our exploration of Staff Augmentation Vs. Managed Services, it’s clear that different IT challenges call for other solutions and software outsourcing models. Managed Services excel when you seek hands-off project execution for more straightforward tasks or repetitive processes, with an outsourced Project Manager overseeing operations.

Staff Augmentation is a great starting point if you’re new to outsourcing or require more control and agility in your projects. Our team can seamlessly integrate with your project, offering a flexible approach to scope and priorities.

Determining between Staff Augmentation Vs. Managed Services that suit your needs best can be challenging. Share your requirements with DevScount’s experts, and we’ll guide you toward the optimal choice for your unique circumstances.